Nov. 26, 2008 – At half-time during last night’s Lady Ute’s game against Louisville, M. John Ashton, executive director of the University of Utah Alumni Association, was honored for 20 years of service to the University of Utah. He was presented with a framed U of U basketball jersey with the #20 in recognition of his years of service to the University and its over 220,000 alumni, as well as for his long-term support of Utah athletics.
“Many of us who know John well are very fond of him and realize that he truly deserves to be recognized in a memorable way for his undying support of the University of Utah and all of the wonderful opportunities it affords students, faculty, staff, alumni, and our great community at large,” says Nanette Richard, director of alumni relations. “John is a loyal Ute through and through.”
Ashton became the executive director of the Alumni Association in June of 1988. Prior to that, he was the president of the Alumni Association and on the University’s Board of Trustees. While a member of the Board of Trustees, Ashton served on the boards of Red Butte Garden, KUED and the Hinckley Institute of Politics. He was on the University of Utah Hospital Association Board for 11 years and the University Hospital Association Board for five years.
An attorney by training, Ashton has brought considerable leadership and innovation to the Alumni Association. During his tenure, the Alumni Association has grown and prospered through its five volunteer boards: the Board of Directors; the Emeritus Board; the Young Alumni Board; the Beehive Board; and the Student Alumni Board.
The Alumni Association also boasts 13 chapters across the nation as well as one in southern Utah. Each year, the association, under Ashton’s direction, hosts a number of sports-related events, including the 5K Homecoming run and pre-game celebrations, both in and out of the state.
The Alumni Association also oversees the successful U of U license plate program, with the proceeds going to student scholarships. Ashton has also increased the number of scholarships awarded by the association. This year, thanks to the generous contributions of U of U alumni, nearly $200,000 will be given in scholarships.
Ashton and his wife Linda are familiar faces at campus events and are great fans of Ute athletics, particularly the Lady Utes.